Lee Wolfe Blum is a Health Educator at the Melrose Institute for Eating Disorders in St. Louis Park, MN. In addition to her job encouraging and educating patients on a day-to-day basis, she runs a support group for friends and family of those affected by eating disorders... Read MoreSubscribe in a reader
I haven't written on here in a while and I apologize if you have returned to this site and found me absent. I have been busy with a new role at work, trying to launch my own author website and edit my book. My book will be released in January of 2014. I couldn't be more excited and scared!
I hope you will follow my writing here and on my author page at:
A refreshing new voice in the eating disorder community. A woman I have been blessed to meet and am more than honored to recommend her book Chasing Silhouettes.
is a unique resource for family members and friends of disordered eaters. Based on the true story of a young woman who struggled with anorexia nervosa, Silhouettes provides a fresh perspective on the age-old topic of body image, and how to redefine it in a world of eating disorders.
Comprised of insight and advice from both families and Christian professionals in the eating disorder field, as well as suggested prayers and tips on what not to say or do, the easy-to-read chapters are separated into five sections:
"It is rare I find a resource that so uniquely supplements the whole-person approach to eating disorder treatment as what I have discovered in this insightful, inspiring book."
-- Gregory L. Jantz, PhD, bestselling author and Founder of A Place of Hope
Author, Save My Children and Chasing Silhouettes
I was inspired after reading this book, What I know Now, Letters to My Younger Self, that I wrote one of my own. This letter is to my 20 year old self. It is a powerful exercise that I encourage you to try.
I will be 40 years old soon and today is Mother’s day. My youngest son sits close to me holding my hand and snuggling his head into my side. I am content and filled with so much joy that salty tears trickle down my aging face. On my other side is my husband that after sixteen years I am falling head over heels madly in love with again and yet again. For the umpteenth time.
I wish you could see me right now.
The scars from all the years that you ran from life took so long to heal. I wish Lee that I could stop the years of pain ahead of you. Stop the years of running and help you live now.
Life is short.
You will later wish you had those years back.
Lee, why are you so afraid? I see you, late at night frantic and rigid as you perfect your lines for your play. I see you run so fast keeping yourself busy so you don’t have to feel. I see you abusing your body and it hurts me so. Because that body is your gift. It births three beautiful boys, it becomes strong, and it holds your heart. Now that body is my friend, not the enemy. And that heart of yours that burst with emotion is a good thing, but you are so afraid to see.
Hope is the thing with feathers
that perches in the soul
and sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all.
Emily Dickenson knew something secret and beautiful. And she shared it with us in this poem about hope. But, you become afraid of that thing with feathers because it might mean you are disappointed again. That your loved one might relapse, might use symptoms, might go back in treatment. So we you lose hope. You grow weary and tired and complacent.
It is easier to not get hurt when we can put a label and an expectation on someone. When we can define them as an anorexic or a bulimic. Sure, maybe they have been struggling with an eating disorder for 10 years, but why can't you still hope? If you don't, the parents, then who will?
I received an email that stopped my heart.
I was chatting with my friends as we finished our warm soup. I noticed through the tall window of the restaurant the cool spring day blowing the icy Minnesota winter away. I reached into my purse to check the time on my phone. An unread email caught my eye.
An email that stopped my heart.
An email telling me that yes, my book, my story will be published. That finally a contract was being sent to me.
In a pink diary with a gold lock and tiny key, I wrote my first journal entry.
"I hate Bobby. He smells.”
I was five. There were thousands, some notebook papers with frayed edges, some fancy leather books with pretty ties, but often they were simple spirals with lines.
It was the words that fell on those lines that mattered. The words that were an expression of my heart and of my soul. An outpouring of the person banging up against a world that offered little breaks and much pain and sorrow. Joy was there too, but mostly the scribbles of me in an unreadable outpouring of words trying to figure life out.
Was God telling me to write? Was God urging me on? I don't know...but I know I needed to write. Late at night when the lights were out, under my covers with a flashlight camping, on a bathroom floor, on a plane. Wherever. I needed it like humans need air.
We are all living in a storybook. Are we not? And what if, in this storybook the story can change.
It does in movies. It does actually in real life, but often we are resistant to the change or we are afraid. And sometimes it really comes down to fighting for your life.
Fighting for a different story.
We talk a great deal about freedom. Freedom of speech. Freedom to vote. Free press.
How about FREEDOM from an eating disorder? I can’t tell you how many times a day I hear people (mostly from family and friends of someone struggling) say; “well, looks like this is just something he or she will struggle with his/her entire life.”
Eating disorders are not a choice. Recovery is.
“This is beautiful. This needs to be published. Finish it.”
She said to me with tears in her eyes and hope on her face after reading through my manuscript. Another author, one I highly respect, filled me with what felt like an ocean of encouragement in my dry desert mind.
I have been working on a book (actually three books) for over 7 years now. I could wallpaper my walls with the rejection letters. I have wavered from highly inspired to almost setting all of the paper on fire and giving up. I struggle with thoughts like this:
I have wasted time writing that I could have been spending with my family.
All the money I have put towards this writing …and for what?
Why did I think I was a writer? This isn’t my gift. I am trying to force a hand that isn’t meant to be.
Who would want to read this story…yet another addiction story.
So when she said those words to me, heartfelt and truthful. I believed her.
For a day. Actually, maybe a week.
There is space in my brain.
Not because I am a blonde, no because Ed doesn't reside there anymore. Walking up the rocky path of the Colorado mountainsde I spun. I spun ideas, and dreams, and goals, and memories. Spun all in the space where Ed used to live.
You see, all that space that the eating disorder takes up in your head can be used for so much more.
I never new that. I am not sure I would have believed it 16 years ago.